How to Maximize Your Press Release Exposure

When you send out a press release you are literally competing with thousands of others who are also seeking some type of media attention.  The problem with many publicity seekers is they have no real clue on how to target the right market so they end up doing what I call a “spray and pray.”  They put out the release and hope the right eyes will see it and respond.

First and foremost, be clear on who you are targeting with your release.  Yes, you are hoping a media outlet (or two) will pick it up but think about who else can benefit from your information.  You can maximize your press release exposure by identifying the groups(s) who would be interested in what you’re offering and then targeting them directly.

How do you do that?

Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google Plus….need I say more.  These social media sites give you an opportunity to build relationships with people you don’t even know.  That, in turn, opens up a new audience of potential buyers and/or customers.

So before you send out that next press release, go to your favorite social media sites, find those groups you feel closely aligned with and start making connections.  It can also maximize your press release exposure because if you’ve built a good relationship with others, you may find your press release “tweeting” around the world.

 

 

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Press Release Mistakes You Must Avoid

When writing a press release, your first goal should be to have someone actually read it—not just the headline—but the ENTIRE release.

Here are some mistakes to avoid to having a newsroom editor hit the delete button:

1) Don’t be too wordy:  The who, what, where, when and why of a press release is sufficient and you can even set it up in bullet points.  For example:

What:  Holiday Bazaar

When:  January 10, 2014

Where:  123 Main Street, Anytown, USA

Why:  To raise money for the Homeless Mission

Who:  Sponsored by (your business) with address and contact information.

You can also add more information to the “why” section to plead your case as to why it would be a great media opportunity.

Your press release is too long:  This ties into your press release being too wordy.  If your press release is more than one page, chances are it is too long.  You should be able to say everything you need on one page.  If you need a second page, that should contain the contact (who) information.

Know the difference between advertising and news.  Don’t try to pass off advertising your business or product as “news.”  If you have a grand opening or are releasing a new book (product) and want news coverage, find an angle to help sell the story.  The “doors opening” isn’t a story.

Misspelled words:  There is nothing worse that receiving a press release with a number of misspelled words. That’s why it’s so important to check your grammar and spelling.

No follow-up:  You can’t rely on a single fax or email to get the press coverage you may be seeking.  It is in your best interest to follow up with the newsroom assignment editor to not only make sure they received your release, but another follow-up closer to the date of your event to see if they will be covering it.  If not, then offer to provide them with a video clip or photos.

Finally, Understand your local media to make sure you’re getting information to the right people at the right time. Call up the news desk and ask what email address is the right one to send your press releases to and what time of day/week they prefer to receive them to make sure you meet their deadlines.

 

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Is Your Press Release Newsworthy

When I worked in radio and television news, i was always surprised at the type of press releases that would be submitted.

Grand Opening of New Pizza Place 

Learn How to Lose the Weight You Want for a New You in the New Year

Have Fun During Free Walking Tour

Believe it or not, these are REAL headlines from REAL press releases.  In my expert opinion, not only are these headlines not attention-grabbing, but they also don’t say anything that would make me want to read on for the “newsworthiness” of the release.

Here’s the point:  just because you’re excited about a certain topic or event doesn’t necessarily mean that you have a newsworthy story.  There are two things for you to consider BEFORE submitting your press release.

1)  What are you selling?  The media tends to frown upon “salesy” type press releases.  If your main goal is to get butts in seats and make a profit, chances are very good that your press release will be overlooked by the newsroom.  Instead, it may be forwarded to the sales department to see if they can get you to spend some advertising dollars to promote your business or product.  Play down the idea that you’re trying to get people to come to your event and focus on the value an event (or product) like yours prevents to Mr. and Mrs. Average America.  And if there is a patriotic, holiday or charitable theme attached, that’s a winner!

2)  What value does it offer to the media?  As much as we want to believe that the media is all about community service and looking out for the little guy, the bottom line is it’s all about ratings and their maximum reach potential. If your story is perceived as a “mom and pop” type event the media is probably going to overlook it;.  However, if if has the perceived power to reach the masses and have them singing the TV station’s praises for covering your news story, then it’s a win-win for everybody.

Editors and reporters have to be satisfied first before they will allow you to convey your newsworthy information to the general public.

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How to Self Promote to Grow Your Business Seminar

How to Self Promote to Grow Your Business

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Topic: Marketing and Sales
Tuesday, October 08, 2013 6:45 PM to 9:00 PM

 

Wake Tech Small Business Center
Western Wake Campus
3434 Kildaire Farm Road
Cary, NC

Learn some of the best-kept secrets in self-promotion! Media expert Beverly Mahone of BAMedia will show you how to maximize media exposure through public service announcements, press releases, blogs, local business websites, and other resources.

Self promotion is one of the best ways to advertise without breaking your bank account.

Pre-registration is not required for Wake Tech’s FREE Small Business Seminars. You will be asked to register when you arrive. We request that you please arrive to the classroom at least 15 minutes before the scheduled start of class. This seminar is presented by The Women’s Business Center of NC. For more information, email entrepreneurship@waketech.edu.

Co-Sponsor(s): The Women’s Business Center of NC

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Use Videos to Make a Difference

Most marketing experts will tell you videos are the way to go if you’re trying to promote yourself and/or your business.  In a recent Forbes online magazine article, the writer declares that online video is vital for your 2013 content marketing objectives.

I believe there is another great reason to use videos—and that is to make a difference.  You can support a worthy cause or simply take a stand on a subject matter you feel very strongly about.   Doing videos isn’t always about promoting yourself.  It can also be your time to shine on a matter near and dear to your heart.  If you do it well, you will receive the benefits of some positive publicity.

Maybe you’re a cancer survivor and you want to share some inspirational moments about your journey.  If you’re a volunteer, you could encourage others to volunteer with a particular group or organization.

Recently, I was asked to speak before our local commissioners to ask them to give financial support to Durham Community Media, where I am a volunteer Producer/Talk Show Host.  Here’s what I said:

Two weeks after this meeting, the station learned it had been approved for funding.

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